data slot machine, big data jackpotIn the gaming industry, customer satisfaction is paramount. In the 2012 report,The Business Impact of Customer Experience found that the impact of customer experience in hospitality and gaming accounted for $1.36 billion in extra revenue; and approximately $825 million of it came from churn reduction, or reduction in the loss of customers.


Data science in gaming is critical to the success of this industry, as casinos have historical and real-time data on everything from restaurant, spa and golf course purchases, to time spent on slot machines. Real-time data from the casino floor is constantly fed into databases, and historical data from loyalty programs grows richer every day.

Having this data allows casinos to individualize incentives offered to each customer for spending and gambling. For example, server-based slot machines at Aria Resort & Casino are altered to suit the individual player. During the National Finals Rodeo, machines load a rodeo theme, provide show times of relevant events and even wish the player a happy birthday.

SaskGaming also turned to big data to increase customer satisfaction by partnering with SAS Analytics and employing predictive data analytics. The goal was to increase demand for slot machine play. Insights from the study allowed SaskGaming to offer the right games, in the right locations, to attract loyal customers.


Predictive analytics and data mining identify valid, potentially useful correlations and patterns in data sets by combing through copious amounts of data to sniff out patterns and relationships that are too subtle or complex for humans to detect. For casino properties, data mining can cull through data from such disparate sources and departments as sales, credit and marketing, thereby allowing users to measure patron behavior on more than 100 different attributes. The use of regression models, linear regression models, neural networks, decision trees and other data mining techniques can provide valuable information to gaming entities.


There is no doubt big data is presenting big opportunities in the gaming industry, and by obtaining a degree in data science, you can open new doors to professional advancement and personal satisfaction. You can use your skill set to solve real world challenges within gaming organizations that value the fact that data can be used to answer questions and solve problems.